Summary: Heaven will be more amazing that we can imagine.
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A Sunday School teacher was teaching his class about heaven. He asked the children, “If I sold my house and my car, had a huge yard sale, and gave all the money to the church, would that get me into heaven?” All the children answered, “NO!” “If everyday I vacuumed the church carpets, cleaned the washrooms, and mowed the grass, would that get me into heaven?” Again, all the children answered, “NO!” “If I was kind to the poor, gave candy to children, and loved my wife, would that get me into heaven?” Once more, the children answered, “NO!” “Then how can I get into heaven?” the teacher asked. A five-year-old boy shouted out, “YOU GOTTA BE DEAD!”
HEAVEN IS UNDER ATTACK
“No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him” (1 Corinthians 2:9).
Two lies Satan wants us to believe about heaven:
• Heaven can WAIT.
One Sunday, a preacher asked his congregation, “How many of you want to go to heaven?” Everyone raised their hands, except for one man sitting in the front row. The preacher wondered if the man had heard the question, so he announced, “Everyone who wants to go to heaven, please stand.” Everyone stood, except the man in the front row. After the service, the preacher asked the man, “Sir, don’t you want to go to heaven?” “Absolutely,” the man replied, “but I thought you were getting a group ready to go RIGHT NOW.”
Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere (Psalm 84:10).
You fill me with joy in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand (Psalm 16:11).
• Most people are GOING to heaven.
“Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it” (Matthew 7:13-14).
A NEW EXPERIENCE
He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” (Revelation 21:5).
1. God will give us new HEAVENS and a new EARTH.
Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea (Revelation 21:1).
“Behold, I will create new heavens and a new earth” (Isaiah 65:17; cf. 66:22).
“But in keeping with his promise we are looking forward to a new heaven and a new earth, the home of righteousness” (2 Peter 3:13; cf. vv. 7-12).
Will the earth be renovated or replaced?
2. God will give us a new HOME.
I saw the Holy City, the New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband (Revelation 21:2).
“Instead, they were longing for a better country—a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them” (Hebrews 11:16).
“One of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues came and said to me, ‘Come, I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb.’ And he carried me away in the Spirit to a mountain great and high and showed me the Holy City, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God. It shone with the glory of God, and its brilliance was like that of a very precious jewel, like a jasper, clear as crystal” (Revelation 21:9-11).
“The twelve gates were twelve pearls, each gate made of a single pearl. The great street of the city was of pure gold, like transparent glass” (Revelation 21:21).
“Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful, but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life” (Revelation 21:27).
3. God will give us new FELLOWSHIP.
And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God (Revelation 21:3).
God desires to be with His people:
• “Then the man and his wife heard the sound of the LORD God as he was walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and they hid from the LORD God among the trees of the garden” (Genesis 3:8).
• “I will put my dwelling place [tabernacle] among you, and I will not abhor you. I will walk among you and be your God, and you will be my people” (Leviticus 26:11-12).